From our own Liz Hulley, at On Life in St.Petersburg

The story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego (I always liked saying those names) is one so familiar from the Sunday school days. But even now, I’m amazed each time I read this testimony of the Lord’s power and favor.

It struck me recently that the story isn’t only about what happens when we trust in God, it’s also about what goes through the mind of someone who does not yet believe. And that’s a perspective about which I sometimes lack understanding.

While reading Daniel 3, something made me examine the king’s point of view. This isn’t a fairytale-God gives us examples in the form of humans who really lived and experienced real emotions that we can relate to. It might be obvious who the “good guys” are, but the “bad guys” sometimes aren’t too far off from our flawed selves. Here is a king, full of power, grasping at human answers to a problem that only God can solve.

King Nebuchadnezzar has already been shown what will be in the future, and now he tries to somehow change his fate.

What I saw in these measures was fear.

And then my mind flashed to all the presidents and other leaders of the world’s nations, who make such decisions…when to go to war, how to deal with enemies, how to keep the peace…

All of this “policy,” “tolerance,”…whether on a local level (in the workplace, school) or international, it all comes down to fear, and the ultimate fear is fear of death. How many people around me live with this fear? How much does my own lifestyle subscribe to this fear, when I should instead have an eternal perspective?